Counseling responds to low student satisfaction

Joash Mencias, Editor-in-Chief

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College of DuPage’s counseling and advising office is working to boost its effectiveness in advising students, including hiring more qualified advisers. The new plan comes after a recent student satisfaction survey found students were not satisfied with COD’s counseling and advising services.

Scott Heck, manager of student development in the department, admits there are issues with counseling and advising, but the department has already been taking steps to address them.

“We’re taking this seriously,” Heck said. “There’s a lot of things happening here that the true fruition of those things can’t be quite seen yet.”

In the survey released last month, students cited advisers’ lack of knowledge about program and transfer requirements as the main reasons for their discontent. Those surveyed also felt the school does not do everything it could help them reach their educational goals.

Heck pointed out the counseling and advising office’s own surveys in the past indicated general student satisfaction.

According to Heck, the counseling and advising office has identified key areas of concern, including the capacity and capability to serve students.

The department has aimed to see every single student to meet with an adviser or counselor once per semester. To help reach that overarching goal, Heck says the college is looking to hire more workers in the department. Heck also wants more advisers with expertise who can provide better information on specific programs.

“The college has been supportive,” Heck said. “As the college has grown, the amount of resources applied to our area has also grown.”

A common complaint among students is the department’s lack of ability to handle a large number of students. Heck cautioned the department cannot handle a large amount of people simultaneously, as advisers and counselors meet one-on-one with students. Many students procrastinate in requesting for advising sessions, something the counseling department advises against.

“We can’t do our job without [students] participating in it,” Heck said. “We’re creating your dream together.”

Heck emphasized the counseling and advising office is trying to help students their achieve educational goals.

“We are strongly committed to student success,” Heck said. “We just need a little more time for implementing [our plans].”

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